I adapted my next lesson for 1st grade from my new Puzzle Pieces book. The original lesson, as it is written, was just a bit too “young” for our first graders. It had the perfect message, but I had to work to extend the ideas just a bit. Plus, I fully believe in teaching children that there is more to fixing a problem then just saying sorry.
Here’s how it turned out . . .
Topics Covered: Interpersonal Effectiveness
Character Skill: Fairness
I began the lesson by introducing and recognizing that we all have problems or troubles with our friends. Some times when we argue or fight someone’s feelings get hurt. Some times this happens on purpose (we get upset with them) or on accident (1st graders LOVE accidents . . . like “I accidentally kicked the ball and it hit him in the face.”) Either way, there is only one way to show our friends that we truly care, and only one way to make those hurt feelings go away . . .
I asked the boys to raise their hand if they’ve ever had a problem, argument, or disagreement with a friend. And surprise, surprise all hands went shooting in the air.
Then I asked them to do my favorite thing . . . tell me the story BUT do not use your friend’s name, only say my friend. It is just so absolutely precious to watch them come to their friend’s name in the story, stop, and say “Well, you know . . . my friend.”
After we shared our own stories about friend troubles, I read them Sorry! by Trudy Ludwig.
After the reading, we talked about how Charlie and Jack worked out their problems (They apologized AND had to show they were sorry through their actions).
I had the boys tell me what it meant when you say “I’m sorry.” I asked them why it was more important to show your friends, parents, or adults you were sorry, as well.
When we say sorry, we make our friends’ hurt feelings feel better, but when we show that we are sorry we fix the problem altogether.
What things can we do to show we are sorry?